‘Now is a fantastic time to visit’: Disney World executive outlines all things new before spring break


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (WFLA) – Walt Disney World Resort is gearing up for a socially-distanced spring break this year.

After remaining closed throughout the spring break season at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, officials are taking precautions to make sure guests remain safe, continuing to require temperature checks. All guests must also wear face coverings, unless actively eating or drinking. The parks remain at limited capacity.

8 On Your Side spoke with Jackie Swisher, vice president of Hollywood Studios, on Wednesday about all things Disney World and what is new, and what has changed in this day and age.

“Now is a fantastic time to visit Walt Disney World Resort. There is so much new happening right now, just in time for spring break and our guests to come out and enjoy the Disney magic,” Swisher said. “We have, here at Disney Hollywood Studios, so many new things to enjoy. We have our newest attraction, that actually features Mickey and Minnie, with ‘Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway.’ It’s our newest attraction here at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.”

Other new attractions include the ever-popular “Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance” ride in the latest theme park land to come to Disney World, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Fans wishing to get on the ride must log in to their “My Disney Experience” apps on their phones to secure a “boarding group” reservation at either 7 a.m. or 1 p.m.

The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival will open to the public next week, though many of the intricate topiaries and flower displays are already popping up around the park’s World Showcase.

Swisher also highlighted the company’s newest resort, latest mode of transportation and a fan-favorite park that will soon be re-opening.

“We have a new resort that opened recently, at Disney’s Riviera Resort, which is a beautiful property that guests will really enjoy getting a taste of the European Riviera. And the Skyliner, that resort is right on the Skyliner line, it is such a fun experience for our guests. As well, we have Blizzard Beach opening on March 7 so, so much to do and see,” she explained.

While character meet-and-greets are currently on hold due to the pandemic, Swisher said character experiences are taking place in motorcades and cavalcades and flotillas across the parks.

There is currently a resort and ticket deal for Florida residents who are looking to visit the parks.

“We have a really great resort domestic package offer going on right now. And that offer is when guests purchase a four resort room night and 3-day ticket package, they get an additional two days added on to that package, added on to their ticket,” said Swisher. “So it’s a great time. That offer is running through arrivals through Sept. 25.”

Those wishing to visit Walt Disney World during spring break, and for the foreseeable future, must make a reservation online.

“I’m happy to have [shared] a bit about the Disney magic and really, in these times, the magic is more important than ever, so we’re so excited to have our guests come to Walt Disney World,” Swisher said.

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